[maemo-community] Command line apps & Extras

From: Valerio Valerio vdv100 at gmail.com
Date: Thu Nov 26 00:24:02 EET 2009

one of the topics of the last community meeting about Extras QA was if
command line applications should be available for regular users through the
application manager or not. We can't reach a consensus, and it seems to
generate very contradictory opinions inside our community.

We're talking about apps that doesn't have a UI nor place a icon in the
desktop, nor are simple enables that display a message during/after

Here are the resume of the pros and cons discussed at the meeting:

Pro arguments:

- Extras should be full of software. The user should know what they are
- We want CLI apps to be available via H-A-M, so that the user sees updates,
can restore them after reflash and so on.
- As long as the description makes clear that this
- Yes, if there's a appropriate category for these apps.
- Suppose tomorrow a security hole is found in openssh, if it's not visible
in h-a-m how will users know about it?
- New user/cli (or, with a subsection-aware HAM, user/network/cli and
user/desktop/cli) for them.
- For some CLI apps (mc,pico,nano,htop,etc) you can actually create a
desktop file that launches app inside an xterm. Can we generate such files
effectively making apps desktop-based?

Con arguments:

- The experience that a ordinary user would have with the bash shell from
extras would be bad.
- It will confuse the regular users, because after install a CLI app they
can't find any direct way to start the app.
- The ones that will use CLI apps, have enough knowledge to install them via
- Ubuntu/fedora... hide these apps in there app managers, because these
aren't suitable for regular users.
- They would click on it and the terminal would pop up, and they would be
- CLI apps are for devs and people who can handle extras-devel.
- After install a CLI app they will call Nokia care: "Hey, my device is
- Applications which don't auto-start/plugin and have no non-X Terminal way
of starting do not get into Extras.
- Note that can be a bit difficult to explain to some people, what is a
command line application.
- CLI apps which need to be run from X Terminal should linger in

Please share your opinion, we need to decide about this asap.

Best regards,

Valério Valério
Maemo Community Council Chair

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